Monday, September 29, 2014

Diversity Immigrant (DV-2016) Visa Program Announced

The Congressionally mandated Diversity Immigrant Visa Program is administered annually by the Department of State. Section 203(c) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) provides for a class of “diversity immigrants,” from countries with historically low rates of immigration to the United States. For fiscal year 2016, 50,000 diversity visas (DVs) will be available. There is no cost to register for the DV program.

Applicants who are selected in the lottery (“selectees”) must meet simple, but strict, eligibility requirements in order to qualify for a diversity visa. Selectees are chosen through a randomized computer drawing. Diversity visas are distributed among six geographic regions and no single country may receive more than seven percent of the available DVs in any one year.

For DV-2016, natives of the following countries are not eligible to apply, because more than 50,000 natives of these countries immigrated to the United States in the previous five years:

Bangladesh, Brazil, Canada, China (mainland-born), Colombia, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Haiti, India, Jamaica, Mexico, Nigeria, Pakistan, Peru, Philippines, South Korea, United Kingdom (except Northern Ireland) and its dependent territories, and Vietnam.

Persons born in Hong Kong SAR, Macau SAR, and Taiwan are eligible.


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Friday, September 26, 2014

Latest USCIS Visa Bulletin Predictions

The American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) recently met again with Charles Oppenheim to discuss the current demand and expected movements in various visa bulletin categories.

Charles Oppenheim is the Chief of the Visa Control and Reporting Division within Department of State (DOS).

Please see the important details below:

EB2 India: As we had reported earlier, EB2 India category quota has been exhausted for FY 2014 on September 10, 2014. However USCIS will continue to accept applications from EB2 India applicants.

In addition, demand in EB2 India category has also increased due to (1) new filings and (2) upgrades from EB3 India to EB2 India category. This will result in heavy retrogression in EB2 India. Priority dates are expected to retrogress from 2009 to early 2005 in the next visa bulletin.


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Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Extension of Temporary Protected Status for Sudan

From USCIS: Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson will re-designate South Sudan for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) and extend the existing TPS designation for the country from Nov. 3, 2014, through May 2, 2016. This allows eligible nationals of South Sudan (or persons without nationality who last habitually resided in South Sudan) to register or re-register for TPS in accordance with the notice published in the Federal Register.

Current South Sudanese beneficiaries seeking to extend their TPS status must re-register during a 60-day period that runs from Sept. 2, 2014, through Nov. 3, 2014. U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) encourages beneficiaries to re-register as soon as possible once the 60-day period begins. USCIS will not accept applications before Sept. 2, 2014.

Who’s EligibleCurrent TPS StatusWhen to File
Current TPS beneficiaries from South SudanHave TPSTo extend your TPS, you must re-register during a 60-day re-registration period that runs fromSept. 2, 2014, through Nov. 3, 2014.
South Sudan nationals and persons without nationality who last habitually resided in South Sudan, who have:
  • Continuously resided in the United States since Sept. 2, 2014, and
  • Been continuously physically present in the United States since November 3, 2014
Do Not Have TPSTo obtain TPS, you may apply for TPS during a 180-day initial registration period that runs from Sept. 2, 2014, through  March 2, 2015.


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Sunday, September 21, 2014

USCIS US Citizen I-129F, I-130 & I-485 Processing Statistics As Of June 2014


Please see below latest US Citizen Beneficiary Statistics released by USCIS:

USCIS I-130 - Immediate Relative Category Processing Statistics:


CSC VSC National
All Other Pending 1,257 24,954 276,293
Customer action waiting 5,398 5,176 21,923
Completed 3,936 6,856 47,836
New receipts 690 4,224 44,688

CSC = California Service Center 
VSC = Vermont Service Center 
    
USCIS I-129F Processing Statistics:


CSC VSC National
All Other Pending 3,447 1,024 17,930
Customer action waiting 947 74 2,181
Completed 2,048 52 3,565
New receipts 1,667 94 4,055

USCIS I-485 Processing Statistics: 


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Thursday, September 18, 2014

USCIS FB I-485 & I-130 Processing Statistics As Of June 2014

Please see below latest FB (family based) statistics released by USCIS:

USCIS I-130 - Preference Category Processing Statistics


 CSC VSC NSC National
All Other Pending 4,340 8,450 884 14,549
Pending but adjudication deferred 353,025 137,787 3,904 497,907
Customer action waiting 17,077 2,805 197 20,223
Completed 17,363 1,449 866 20,355
New receipts 16,492 4,347 627 21,618

Volume in Texas Service Center (TSC) is currently low.

CSC = California Service Center
VSC = Vermont Service Center
NSC = Nebraska Service Center
 
USCIS FB I-485 Processing Statistics


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Monday, September 15, 2014

USCIS EB I-140 and I-485 Processing Statistics As Of June 2014


USCIS EB I-140 Processing Statistics 


 TSC NSC National
Pending 13,480 10,410 23,951
Customer Action Wait 1,703 1,521 3,224
Completed 4,485 2,872 7,357
New Receipt 4,844 3,782 8,626

USCIS EB I-485 Processing Statistics


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Saturday, September 13, 2014

November 2014 Visa Bulletin Predictions

For October 2014 Visa Bulletin, please click here: http://blog.mygcvisa.com/2014/09/october-2014-visa-bulletin-analysis.html

For the official November 2014 Visa Bulletin, please click here: http://blog.mygcvisa.com/2014/10/november-2014-visa-bulletin.html

Please see November 2014 Visa Bulletin Predictions below (for both Family Based and Employment Based):

Quick Summary:

Family Based:

Family-Sponsored All Chargeability Areas Except Those Listed CHINA- mainland born INDIA MEXICO PHILIPPINES
F1 22APR07 22APR07 22APR07 15JUL94 08OCT04
F2A 08MAR13 08MAR13 08MAR13 15SEP12 08MAR13
F2B 15DEC07 15DEC07 15DEC07 01NOV94 08JAN04
F3 22DEC03 22DEC03 22DEC03 01NOV93 08JUN93
F4 08FEB02 08FEB02 08FEB02 08FEB97 08MAY91

Employment Based:


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Friday, September 12, 2014

October 2014 Visa Bulletin Analysis

For October 2014 Visa Bulletin, please click here: http://blog.mygcvisa.com/2014/09/october-2014-visa-bulletin.html

Please see below analysis of October 2014 Visa Bulletin:

EB1: All EB1 categories are current and should continue to remain current for fiscal year. Demand continues to be around 1200-1400 every month (per the latest pending inventory).

EB2 ROW: This category continues to remain current. Demand in EB2ROW continues to be very low at an average of around 300-600 per month. 

EB2 China: As expected, EB2 China moved forward by 5 weeks in this visa bulletin. It is likely to continue to move forward around 3 to 5 weeks per month.

EB2 India: Also as expected, EB2 India category did not move forward in this visa bulletin. We had earlier posted a blog post that according to Charles Oppenheim, EB2 India quota has been used up for fiscal year 2014. This means no new visas will be allocated to EB2 India between September 10 and September 30, 2014.

We have added a blog post exclusive to EB2 India movement in fiscal year 2014. As many of you expected, DOS has predicted retrogression in November due to large demand from (a) applicants porting from EB3 India to EB2 India  (since they have been waiting in EB3 India category for more than a decade) and (b) applicants who are filing I-485 for the first time.

Also please see this blog post for updates in EB2 (India, ROW and China) category.


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Thursday, September 11, 2014

EB2 India Unavailable For Rest Of Fiscal Year 2014

Mr. Charles Oppeneheim announced yesterday that that quota for EB2 India has been used up and no new visas will be available atleast until September 30, 2014.

However if you have set up interview for consular processing, visa may still be available. The best thing to do is to contact the local embassy where your interview is set up and confirm visa availability. This may change from embassy to embassy in different countries and hence it is not possible to list all (around 200 embassy/consulate) information here.

If you are from EB2 India and your I-485 application is approved between September 10 and  September 30, 2014, please let everyone know in the comment section below.


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Saturday, September 6, 2014

October 2014 Visa Bulletin

For September 2014 Visa Bulletin, please click here: http://blog.mygcvisa.com/2014/08/september-2014-visa-bulletin.html

For analysis of October 2014 Visa Bulletin, please click here: http://blog.mygcvisa.com/2014/09/october-2014-visa-bulletin-analysis.html

October 2014 Visa Bulletin has been released (valid from October 1 to October 31 only). Please see below for more details.

Family Based:

Family-Sponsored All Chargeability Areas Except Those Listed CHINA-mainland born INDIA MEXICO PHILIPPINES
F1 22MAY07 22MAY07  22MAY07 22JUN94 01SEP04
F2A 01FEB13 01FEB13 01FEB13 22JUL12 01FEB13
F2B 01NOV07 01NOV07 01NOV07 01AUG94  15DEC03
F3 01DEC03 01DEC03 01DEC03 22OCT93 01JUN93
F4 22JAN02 22JAN02 22JAN02 01FEB97 08APR91

Employment Based:


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Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Multiple Immigration News

1. Updated Fees Structure: Effective September 6, USCIS is going to change fees for some forms. Please see the link below for  full details:

http://www.ofr.gov/OFRUpload/OFRData/2014-20516_PI.pdf

2. Processing Statistics:



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Monday, September 1, 2014

SEVIS Highlights

WHAT IS THE STUDENT AND EXCHANGE VISITOR PROGRAM (SEVP)?

The Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP), a program within the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), is a part of the National Security Investigations Division and acts as a bridge for government organizations that have an interest in information on nonimmigrants whose primary reason for coming to the United States is to be students. On behalf of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), SEVP manages schools, nonimmigrant students in the F & M visa classifications and their dependents.

The Department of State manages Exchange Visitor Programs, nonimmigrant exchange visitors in the J visa classification and their dependents. Both SEVP and the Department of State use the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS) to track and monitor schools; exchange visitor programs; and F, M and J nonimmigrants while they visit the United States and participate in the U.S. education system.

WHAT IS THE STUDENT AND EXCHANGE VISITOR INFORMATION SYSTEM (SEVIS)?

SEVIS is the web-based system that DHS uses to maintain information on SEVP-certified schools and the F & M students who come to the United States to attend those schools. SEVIS also maintains information on Department of State-designated exchange visitor program sponsors and J-1 visa exchange visitor program participants. It is a critical tool in SEVP’s mission to protect national security while supporting the legal entry of the more than one million F, M and J nonimmigrants to the United States for education and cultural exchange.

DEFINITIONS
• Nonimmigrants – Person entering the United States to visit, study or work (depending on the type of visa) temporarily but not to stay permanently in the United States.
• F-1 nonimmigrant students – Nonimmigrant status conferred on a student pursuing a full program of study in a college, university, seminary, conservatory, academic high school, private elementary school, other academic school or language training program in the United States that is SEVP-certified to enroll F and/or M students.
• M-1 nonimmigrant students – Nonimmigrant status conferred on a foreign national pursuing a full program of study at an SEVP-certified vocational school or other recognized non-academic school (other than in language training programs).
• J-1 exchange visitors – Foreign national selected by a Department of State-designated program to participate in an exchange visitor program.
• STEM – Science, technology, engineering and mathematics programs of study.

STUDENTS AND EXCHANGE VISITORS
• There are currently 966,333 F & M students studying in the United States.
• There are currently 232,988 J-1 exchange visitors in the United States.
• Twenty-eight percent of all F & M students in the United States originate from China.
• Seventy-five percent of all F & M students in the United States are from Asia.
• When compared to July 2013, the number of active F & M students and exchange visitors increased eight percent to 87,370.


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